Lake County (FL) Council Meeting
16 February 2016

Michael Rowe (318 words)

Thank you so very much for inviting me.  By opening this invocation to myself and others you have helped to make a better democracy. One of the biggest threats to democracy is apathy, and if everyone cannot feel welcome and accepted to join and participate than they will simply shrug their shoulders and let a chosen few make all the decisions. If the citizens of their cities, counties, states and countries were fully involved in their political events it would be a far more effective determent to their enemies.

Let us open our hearts to the welfare of all the people in our community by respecting the inherent dignity and worth of each person, and realize our differences of race, politics, religion, and social standing are merely superficial. Our common humanity unites us all, and may we recognize that, through our interdependence - that we share a common fate.

In order to achieve the greatest good as citizens of Lake County, it is important for us to maintain an open mind, and honor and respect the human rights of each other. We should consider the benefit provided by differing perspectives, and be willing to question assumptions that serve only to obstruct our path to progress.

Rather than bowing our heads and closing our eyes in deference, we should open our eyes widely to face the reality that confronts us and not lose sight of our ideals of what we could achieve. Through the prudent use of reason, compassion, listening to constituents and inviting their feedback, we can ensure success and a feeling of community in this great county.

Lastly, we must remember that in the face of adversity we need not look above ourselves for answers, but instead recognize the proven potential in ourselves and each other to overcome any challenges we face. Members of the board I respect and appreciate your service to the county.

Thank you.